07.06 Phenytoin (Dilantin)

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Generic Name

phenytoin

Trade Name

Dilantin

Indication

tonic clonic seizures, arrhythmias, neuropathic pain

Action

interferes with ion transport, shortens action potentials and decreases automaticity blocks sustained
high frequency repetitive firing of action potentials.

Therapeutic Class

antiarrhythmics, anticonvulsants

Pharmacologic Class

hydantoins

Nursing Considerations

• monitor serum phenytoin levels
• therapeutic levels 10-20 mcg/mL
• use cautiously in all patients
• can cause suicidal thoughts, ataxia, extrapyramidal symptoms, hypotension, tachycardia, arrhythmias, gingival hyperplasia, nausea, rash, drug induced hepatitis, agranulocytosis, Steven’s Johnson syndrome
• concurrent administration of enteral feedings may decrease absorption
• monitor for hypersensitivity
• assess seizures
• assess hemodynamics

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